OPINION: Corrupt judges need consequences

Petition to impeach Judge John McKeon. (change.org)

Petition to impeach Judge John McKeon. (change.org)

What happens when one of the most esteemed and trusted professions becomes corrupt? Cruelty and a lack of justice run rampant throughout the country and people are not happy about it. 

Within the past few months there has been an increase of uproar in the news and on social media in regards to the sentencing of criminals and the judges who do so.  

It has sprouted up here and there, building momentum, and each case is falling like a snowflake in an impending snowstorm.

Most famous, as of late, is the Stanford Rape Case. Brock Turner, at 20 years old, was a student and swimmer at Stanford University.

 In March, Turner was charged with three counts of sexual assault. He was leaving a party when he sexually assaulted an unconscious 23-year-old woman behind a dumpster on campus.

Turners’ father, Dan Turner, wrote a letter in his sons’ defense stating that he [Brock] is not violent and the act was only “20 minutes of action.” It can easily be construed from the fathers letter that Turners’ lack of appetite is punishment enough.

Judge Aaron Persky, Stanford University alumni, oversaw the case and sentenced Turner to only 6 months in jail instead of the 2-year-minimum. Ultimately, Turner only served a total of 3 months from June to Sept.

“A prison sentence would have a severe impact on him.” Persky said. “I think he will not be a danger to others.”

But what about the victim? How could Judge Perky overlook the victim in this ordeal and hold sympathy for Turner who was unanimously deemed guilty. How can Persky assume Turner is not dangerous when he has already committed this atrocious crime?

Following the prosecution and release of Turner, Persky is no longer hearing criminal cases. It is a start but is it enough? 

Most recently, in October, a Montana victim faced a similar injustice not only at the hands of a judge but also her parents. Judge John McKeon sentenced a 40-year-old father of three, Martin Joseph Blake,

to 60 days in jail for sexually assaulting his 12-year-old daughter repeatedly.  

The mother and grandmother of the victim argued in the defense of the man stating that his children, primarily his sons, would be affected more by the absence of their father than of his actions.  

According to reports, no one spoke on behalf of the 12-year-old victim.

Even taking the mother and grandmother’s argument into account, how can the judge overlook that what the father did to his daughter and provide such an abysmal sentence for him?

Unfortunately, the justice system is failing the victims it is set to protect. It’s very formidable but, as cheesy and cliché as it sounds, anything is possible if we band together and speak up about the injustice. Petitions have been created on Change.org for the impeachment of Persky and McKeon.

Not only do the criminals need to be held responsible for their crimes but as do the judges who sentence below the minimum to disrespectful lows.

The actions of these judges, and many more, send waves throughout our society and perpetuate that the lives of the criminals will be affected more by a (long) prison sentence than the action itself in relation to the victim.